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[Alfred Hitchcock on Video]


- FICTION: The Vertigo Murders: An Alfred Hitchcock Mystery: 304 pages (October 31, 2000)
Book Description
Fully Authorized by the Hitchcock Estate and Universal Studios! The year is 1957, and the sun-tanned citizenry of Los Angeles is in the grip of a bizarre series of murders. Alfred Hitchcock is developing his latest film when he receives a painting from an old friend and director. Shortly after receiving it, his friend turns up murdered, and the painting becomes a clue to the identity of the criminal who has paralyzed the city. Joining forces with an L.A.P.D. detective, Hitch sets out on a trail that takes the pair from the mansions of Beverly Hills to the haunts of forgotten starlets and the docks of Long Beach Harbor, as the mystery grows more and more like a thrilling Hitchcockian film itself.
Review: According to reviewers, Hitchcock actually only puts in a few brief appearances in the book.
- Vertigo: The Making of a Hitchcock Classic 240 pages (August 2000)
Vertigo is Alfred Hitchcock's masterpiece and perhaps his most personal film. To view it once is to be devastated. With each subsequent screening, most viewers notice bits of business, depths of thought, and stunning ironies that had previously eluded them. Vertigo is a riveting experience, haunting its fans in the same way that Scottie Ferguson (James Stewart) is haunted by the mysterious Madeleine Elster (Kim Novak).

Upon researching the film, author Dan Auiler found that "this odd, obsessional, very un-matter-of-fact film was created" under "systematic, businesslike, matter-of-fact circumstances." His book gives us the opportunity to witness the construction of a film that seems at once amazing complex and absolutely seamless. He discusses the painstaking development of the screenplay (including its controversial explication of the mystery only two-thirds of the way through the film), the decision to cast Novak instead of Vera Miles opposite Stewart, the typically meticulous Hitchcock shoot, the film's amazing special effects and extraordinary credit and dream sequences, and the legendary musical score composed by Bernard Herrmann. Upon finishing the book, readers will appreciate the various contributions of Hitchcock, Herrmann, Stewart, Novak, actress Barbara Bel Geddes, Thomas Narcejac and Pierre Boileau (who wrote the book upon which it is based), uncredited scenarists Maxwell Anderson and Angus MacPhail, screenwriters Alec Coppel and Samuel Taylor, cinematographer Robert Burks, editor George Tomasini, costume designer Edith Head, and many others. The book includes a list of cast and crew, an appendix discussing the VistaVision process in which it was shot, a forward by Vertigo enthusiast Martin Scorsese, and hundreds of production photos, reproductions of memos, storyboard sketches, and posters. Vertigo: The Making of a Hitchcock Classic has enhanced even this avid fan's appreciation of a film he's long known and loved. --Raphael Shargel

- The Art of Alfred Hitchcock: Donald Spoto: 471 pages 2nd edition (January 1992)
A revision of the 1976 Hopkinson and Blake edition. Annotation copyright Book News, Inc. Portland, Or.
The monumental scope of Hitchcock's work remains unsurpassed by any other movie director, past or present. Psycho, Rear Window, The Birds and Vertigo are only a few of his classics.d his superb analysis--still the Hitchcockian commentary after 15 years in print. Photographs throughout.
From the Publisher
This completely revised and updated edition of the classic text describes and analyzes every movie made by master filmmaker Alfred Hitchcock.
- Hitchcock Poster Art Hardcover (September 1999)
The 100th anniversary of Alfred Hitchcock's birth brought about numerous retrospectives of his career, but Hitchcock Poster Art is perhaps the most fitting tribute for such a master of visual images. This stunning compilation contains posters for each of Hitchcock's films--even one from an early silent for which Hitchcock served as screenwriter and assistant director. The collection is incredibly thorough, including posters from foreign releases, lobby cards, and cover art from movie tie-in novels. The art itself is splashy and gorgeous, but this title is far more than eye candy. What a delight to track the evolution of film posters themselves over Hitchcock's 50-plus-year career, and to witness the stylistic differences between countries--the posters from Poland are disturbingly stark, especially in contrast to the colorful work from Japan. Another fascinating visual progression is how Hitchcock's image was used as his career unfolded, whether looming over the characters in Marnie or slyly inserting an L into Strang[l]ers on a Train. Hitchcock fans and movie lovers of all stripes will relish this celebration of a true film genius. --Ali Davis

- Me and Hitch 96 pages (November 1997)

Renowned for his bestselling novels such as The Blackboard Jungle and the popular 85th Precinct series (written under the name Ed McBain), Evan Hunter also worked with the famous Alfred Hitchcock, writing film scripts for The Birds and Marnie. In telling about working with Hitchcock, Hunter is as frank as he is entertaining.

- Hitchcock's America, 224 pages (January 1999)

Book Description
Hitchcock's American films are not only some of the most admired works of world cinema; they also offer some of our most acute responses to the changing shape of American society in the 1940s, '50s, and '60s. The contributors to this anthology--scholars of film, history, and literature--show how famous films like Strangers on a Train, Vertigo, Psycho, and Rear Window along with more obscure ones like The Trouble with Harry and Family Plot register the ideologies and insurgencies, the normative assumptions and cultural alternatives, that shaped those tumultuous decades. The Hitchcock that emerges in this volume is not merely the inspired technician and master of abnormal psychology that critics have justly hailed. He is also a cultural critic of remarkable insight and undeniable prescience.

- Hitchcock/Truffaut
367 pages Revised edition (October 1985)

Any book-length interview with Alfred Hitchcock is valuable, but considering that this volume's interlocutor is François Truffaut, the conversation is remarkable indeed. Here is a rare opportunity to eavesdrop on two cinematic masters from very different backgrounds as they cover each of Hitch's films in succession. Though this book was initially published in 1967 when Hitchcock was still active, Truffaut later prepared a revised edition that covered the final stages of his career. It's difficult to think of a more informative or entertaining introduction to Hitchcock's art, interests, and peculiar sense of humor. The book is a storehouse of insight and witticism, including the master's impressions of a classic like Rear Window ("I was feeling very creative at the time, the batteries were well charged"), his technical insight into Psycho's shower scene ("the knife never touched the body; it was all done in the [editing]"), and his ruminations on flops such as Under Capricorn ("If I were to make another picture in Australia today, I'd have a policeman hop into the pocket of a kangaroo and yell 'Follow that car!'"). This is one of the most delightful film books in print. --Raphael Shargel

- Hitchcock: The Making of a Reputation (November 1992)

From Book News, Inc.
Kapsis uses Alfred Hitchcock's career and legacy as a genre director and film auteur as a case study in the creation of reputation in the art world of film. He analyzes the impact of self-promotion, sponsorship by prominent members of the film community, and changing aesthetic standards on the critical acceptance of Hitchcock as a significant film artist and how this acceptance, in turn, affected the reputation of the thriller genre. Includes 40 b&w glossy photos. Annotation copyright Book News, Inc. Portland, Or.

- Hitchcock at Work
288 pages (May 2000)

From the Publisher
A comprehensive, behind-the-scenes examination of the work of director Alfred Hitchcock (1899-1980). Fully illustrated throughout in colour and black and white, this book examines all of the director's career, from the early films made in the UK in the 20th and 30th, to his move to Hollywood where he became co-producer as well as director of his films. It therefore provides an overview of his movies as well as being a visual celebration of one of the word's most renowned directors. Many of the illustrations are published here for the first time and include film stills, shots from film sets, storyboards and reproductions of Hitchcock's annotated scripts. The book also includes a complete filmography.

- The Dark Side of Genius, 508 pages centennial edition (October 1999)
How is it possible to paint a portrait of an artist who left behind none of the notebooks and journals that provide most biographers with important personal details? After exhaustive researching and interviewing, Donald Spoto came to the conclusion that "Hitchcock's films were indeed his notebooks and journals ... [they] are astonishingly personal documents." This account of Alfred Hitchcock's life reads the mind of the man through the making of his films. Spoto argues powerfully and convincingly that movies like Notorious, Rear Window, Vertigo and Psycho can be appreciated not only as masterpieces of entertainment but also as subtle, revealing autobiography.

- Writing With Hitchcock - 336 pages 1 Ed edition (July 2001)

From Publishers Weekly
Alfred Hitchcock: The name conjures up incredible suspense, mordant laughs, the surprise ending. But Hitch's unique vision was not his alone. In this detailed analysis of the filmmaker's collaboration with screenwriter Hayes, DeRosa reveals how Hitchcock's basic artistic instincts were often radically reshaped and transformed by Hayes's nimble writing. The Hitchcock-Hayes collaborations--Rear Window, To Catch a Thief, The Trouble with Harry and The Man Who Knew Too Much--form a transitional period in the director's career, with the writer contributing a kinder vision of the human condition, highly sophisticated dialogue and a sense of humor to Hitchcock's works. DeRosa, a former film archivist, has soundly researched his subject and carefully compares the original versions of each film with its ensuing treatments, scripts and multiple revisions. Relying heavily on interviews with Hayes as well as on studio memos and production notes, DeRosa gives us not only an in-depth portrait of this working relationship but a comprehensive look at the industry in the late 1950s, when it was struggling to reassert itself after the emergence of television. The author also engagingly describes the cultural politics of the time (Joseph Breen and the Production Code were vigilant in attacking Hayes's edgy, urbane representations of sexuality). DeRosa also brings convincing drama to Hayes and Hitchcock's breakup and charts Hayes's later career writing such films as Peyton Place and The Children's Hour. While overly specific for the general reader, this is an important study for film and Hitchcock scholars.

- Hitchcock's Notebooks
- 576 pages 1st harper edition (April 3, 2001)
Dan Auiler is undoubtedly the luckiest Alfred Hitchcock devotee alive. With the permission of the director's family, he sifted through the Hitchcock archives at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to create a multifaceted portrait of the artist at work. If this book has a fault, it's that the sheer mass of information makes it a little hard to digest; but taken in small doses, its richness becomes a virtue, offering unique insights into the complicated processes that led to some of the greatest movies ever made. Auiler divides the creative act into three parts: "Building the Screenplay," "Preparing the Visual," and "Putting It All Together." In each section he provides documents, including memos, script excerpts, sketches, and storyboards from a selection of films. Most interesting are those relating to Kaleidoscope a project from the late '60s that, Auiler contends, would have been a groundbreaking film had the studio not forced Hitchcock to abandon it. This collection also gives full credit to Alma Reville, the director's wife and lifelong collaborator, and her influence on the development of Hitchcock's style is evident throughout. Other gems include a transcript of discussions between Hitchcock and Tippi Hedren about her character in The Birds and a set of production stills from an early, lost movie, The Mountain Eagle. There's an enormous amount to take in, but what quickly emerges is a sense of Hitchcock's meticulous approach to crafting a film. He frequently sent script treatments to other writers and filmmakers, asking for their critical comments, and Auiler reproduces several of these correspondences, including François Truffaut's detailed analysis of Kaleidoscope. At the other end of the creative journey the book closes with the script for an unproduced Spellbound trailer in which Hitchcock playfully evokes the magic of movies: "That screen up there is like a mind ... we here in Hollywood can make anything happen there." Hitchcock's Notebooks is a testament to the powerful vision and sheer hard work that lay behind that magic. --Simon Leake

- Hitchcock Centenary Essays 288 pages (December 1999)
If you're looking for more information about the films, versatility, and lasting impact of Alfred Hitchcock, Hitchcock: Centenary Essays should sate your hunger. Celebrating the 100th anniversary of Hitchcock's birth, editors Richard Allen and S. Ishi Gonzales have assembled a collection of essays that cover not only the gamut of Hitchcock's movies, but also their continuing importance in today's culture. Acclaimed critics and theorists like Slavoj Zizek, Peter Wollen, Brigitte Peucker, William Rothman, Susan White, Raymond Bellour, and Lee Edelman contribute essays on famous films like Vertigo, Psycho, and The Thirty-Nine Steps, as well as lesser-known works like Stage Fright, Rope, Foreign Correspondent, and Marnie.

The book also covers Hitchcock's status as the "master of suspense," his forays into the genre of film noir, his interest in painting and sculpture, his humor, and his vision of the future. (It even offers a chapter somewhat mysteriously entitled "The Hitchcockian Blot.") "This centenary," the editors write, "provides us with the ideal occasion to consider the nature of Hitchcock's achievement as a filmmaker, the relationship between the artist and the authorial persona he partially (and ingeniously) manufactured, and the relationship of the director's work to the larger political and economic forces that shaped it. It also happens to coincide with the end of the twentieth century.... We would like to suggest that Hitchcock is the century's exemplary artist." --Raphael Shargel

- The Alfred Hitchcock Story 224 pages Illustrated edition (November 1999)

Author's note
The US edition is less complete than the UK edition!
As the principal author of 'The Alfred Hitchcock Story', I feel impelled to report that the publishers of the US edition have cut passages of the text (e.g. three paragraphs in the 39 STEPS essay; drastic cuts to the 'Alfred Hitchcock Presents' piece) and have otherwise 'simplified' and modified the original text throughout the book. Intending purchasers may like to order instead the beautiful, and COMPLETE, UK edition, either from or

This page last updated on March 10, 2002.

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